world best travel places: May 2012

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Scariest places on earth

This time is the one time of year when the macabre is most appealing. We can watch our favorite killers in horror movies, or read about the most notorious from the non-fiction realm. We can probe into the paranormal, and hold our breath for what may, or may not, happen. Whether you believe in ghosts and ghouls, or wave them aside as the fictional fables of bygone centuries, some places on this planet still strike a spooky chord. They are the places that inspire nightmares, panic attacks and revisits. And, with any luck, you may just find something otherworldly. Enjoy the list!
Resurrection Cemetery
Chicago, United States

We have all heard stories about ghostly hitchhikers. But have you heard of the most famous one? I’m speaking about Resurrection Mary. In 1934, sixteen-year-old Mary was a regular at the O’Henry Ballroom, which still stands today (although it is now the Willow-brook). She got into an argument with her boyfriend on the dance floor, and left the ballroom. She was walking home along Archer Avenue, and right about the time she was passing Resurrection Cemetery, a car swerved out of control, and struck and killed her. Her family was heartbroken and had her buried in the cemetery she lost her life in front of, still in her dancing gown and shoes. And that is how this story ends. Until five years later, at least….
It was now 1939, and Jerry Palus was yet another regular at the O’Henry. He spotted a beautiful blonde girl across the room, and asked her to dance. They danced the entire night, with the young lady barely uttering a word. He offered her a ride home when the night was through, and she accepted. When they were passing Resurrection Cemetery, she quickly told him to stop and let her out there, instead of taking her to the address she had given him. She disappeared at the gates.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Most stunning castles

Fairytales, princes, princesses and Disney movies of childhood and even as we get older, the appeal of the castle remains at least partly because they so regularly serve as backdrops in video games, movies and books.
Unless you happen to find that you had a long lost great great grandfather who left you an international conglomerate in mining and shipping then, unfortunately, you’ll probably never get the chance to live in such grandeur. Luckily there are a lot of absolutely stunning castles around the world that are open to the public, some are even converted into hotels where you can stay if only for a night.

Schonbrunn Palace, Austria
Schonbrunn Palace: Anyone who knows much about European history knows about the important influence of the Hapsburg family. The aesthetic preferences of that family are displayed here in the palaces and gardens that make up this amazing castle in the heart of modern Vienna. One outstanding feature is a ‘Roman Ruin’ which

Friday, May 4, 2012

Oldest paintings in caves

A newly discovered mural is one of many in 12 of Afghanistan’s famed Bamian caves that show evidence of an oil-based binder. The binder was used to dry paint and help it adhere to rocky surfaces.
The murals—and the remains of two giant, destroyed Buddhas—include the world’s oldest known oil-based paint, predating European uses of the substance by at least a hundred years, scientists announced late last month.
Researchers made the discovery while conducting a chemical analysis as part of preservation and restoration efforts at Bamian, which lies about 145 miles (240 kilometers) northwest of the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Seen in a 2005 photo, a towering alcove in Afghanistan’s Bamian Valley cliffs shows the former home of a giant Buddha statue. Dating to between the fifth and ninth centuries A.D., the statue was one of a pair destroyed by Taliban officials in 2001.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Coldest places in the world

Verkhoyansk, in the Yakutia region of Siberia, lies within the Arctic Circle, an eight-day drive from Yakutsk. But you can only drive there in the winter, when the lakes are frozen, because there are no land roads! 1,300 people live in Verkhoyansk, the biggest part of whom make their living herding reindeer and fur hunting. The area has abundant natural resources, including gold, but is too cold to develop profitable mining. The picture above was taken at the Pole of Cold in Verkhoyansk. Note the mammoth’s tusks that mark the spot.
Temperatures that have been recorded at the Verkhoyansk Weather Station have shown a record low of minus

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Fake street signs

A collaborative project that takes the work of artists from around the world, in the form of fake road signs, and turns the streets of Lyon, France into an enormous gallery without walls.
The round red and white signs look enough like real European traffic signs that you might take them for granted, but weird enough if you notice them to make you stop and think.
This project has a delightful sense of humor, lots playful absurdity and a wonderful scale. Panos 2013 is the second edition of this project.